Grist for the Mill: Petition madness and election season lunacy – the prequel

The Hoboken candidate petition deadline has come and passed.  It didn’t go quietly into the night.

Hoboken resident Domenick Amato working in recent days to get on the ballot for City Council admitted in a conversation with MSV he came up short.  “I started too late,” the retired civil engineer said although in three days he tabulated almost 300 of the just over 400 petitions required.

Some HHA and senior building locations became war zones in recent days and featured dirty tactics according to one certification awaiting council candidate Patricia Waiters. She described nefarious activities where petitions were being paid at ten dollars per signature outside lower Jackson St. where the monthly housing meeting failed to make quorum.

Waiters said she witnessed Beth Mason political operative Matt Calicchio and resident Dio Braxton, a HHA vote-by-mail leader in past elections involved in a less than legal endeavor for the Raia slate.

At another seniors building uptown at Fox Hills, the pay rate is reportedly $20 with petitions on one page and another requesting a vote-by-mail ballot.  Who would do such a thing with another payment to be made later?

Matt Calicchio, fourth ward Democratic committeeman and political operative with
his boss, Councilwoman Beth Mason at the 1600 park event.  Election season and
more dirty tricks time?  One potential council candidate claimed she saw it.

At Columbia Arms, Waiters vociferously complained her name was being used to obtain petitions for the Raia slate.  That activity followed Waiters making an appearance which may mean the true intent was to nullify her petitions at certification with the City Clerk’s office.  With 458 petitions submitted, Waiters may be on the bubble.  Did it lead to her meltdown later where she attempted to hijack the City Council meeting Tuesday night?

Waiters claimed the Council President failed to completely read the public meetings notice statement at the start of the proceedings (see part 1 below).  Both the Corporation Counsel and City Clerk indicated otherwise but Waiters would not stop interrupting as Councilwoman Beth Mason joined in the hijack and insisted she had the right to continue berating the proceedings not yet underway.

The comments that followed were politically tone deaf and insulting or worse.  Oh and Ms. Waiters, Beth Mason wasn’t helping; she was throwing gas on your self-immolation.

At the City’s popular spaghetti dinner, mayoral candidate Assemblyman Ruben Ramos and and former Assembly aide and Bayonne resident Nick Calicchio reportedly cut the line for dinner.  Everyone of course had paid but why would Ruben Ramos cut the line in a prepaid democratic assembly?

At least one eyewitness, Hoboken resident and Democratic committeeman John Carey claims he was waiting in line and didn’t appreciate the self-anointed VIP treatment.  The Ramos camp says there must have been some confusion and it never happened.
The scene of local lotto induced fever occurred at a recent Seniors Bingo Game.  Frank Raia and Timmy Occhipinti showed up to make the rounds.  Raia set up a $100 game which was greeted with great fanfare.  Timmy followed with a $20 game which was received with snoring.
At the Multi-Service Center some entrants were looking to score some easy petition collections.  The usual host glad to look the other way wasn’t running the center at that time so the would be Raia slate collectors got the boot instead.  One hears it’s the usual suspects.
The holiday weekend saw one commenter post a bomb thrower quiz causing a buzz in weekend traffic and murmurs right though Labor Day.  Here’s a couple more in the same spirit.
What long time resident recalls partaking of an illicit substance with one controversial politico who’s been featured in the news lately?  If you cracked it up “back in the day” does it lead to you cracking up with delusions of grandeur later?
What lady politico exec’s medical examination is leading to severe concern among a certain legal ambulance chaser type?  The purported x-ray shows a miraculous growth of steel overlaying the entire spinal column.  Doctors are declaring it a bionic miracle causing much frothing of the mouth of one braying legal jackal.
It certainly won’t come as good news in this unfortunate Jersey Journal story.  Oh the humanity.
Grist for the Mill is MSV’s rumor column.  Got a tasty carrot for Da Horsey? Send it to

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